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Restoration Complete- welcome back Westfalia F-1357!
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mmdingman
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 8:20 pm    Post subject: Restoration Complete- welcome back Westfalia F-1357! Reply with quote

It's been nearly a year since I purchased this wolfsburg, and two and a half years since I started the search... I'm so happy to say that our 'new' camper van is back together and ready to go! thanks to everyone out there that make such a thing possible; individual sellers, Sewfine, Van-Cafe & GoWesty. Welcome back Westfalia F-1357!

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started with an incredibly well preserved body from Cali via Washington via Portland. stripped out the biodegradable interior & sun-fried bits.
-new fabric on `90 seats with swivel lower cushions thanks to parts squirreled away from an old Chicago parts van and a Oscoda Michigan donor camper respectively. new carpet in tan too.
-swivel seat installed on passenger side
-poorly retrofitted A/C removed (bummer, thought I had factory air)
-new alloys & tires
-new YELLOW canvas
-restored jumpseat pocket
-restored westie build sticker
-restored front grill
-vented rear-qtr-windows & bigger sliders swapped for over-tinted, beaten originals

still a few things to do (paint top, install arm rests.... find a name) but we've broken it in now with an overnight. Wheatland Music Feastival here we come! no more sleeping 3 to the bed with the pack'n'play set up in the passenger-compartment floor; two beds, ye-hah!.

turning point; everything out:
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as purchased:
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85 Wesfalia Wolfsburg (2009ish - present)
87 Syncro Hardtop (1997 -2010ish)
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spitsnrovers
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 19, 2009 8:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Very nice looking job!

I'm curious by this statement:
-vented rear-qtr-windows & bigger sliders swapped for over-tinted, beaten originals

What does that mean? D you have a photo of same?
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Alaric.H
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2009 4:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The yellow pop top canvas looks great.
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Steelhead
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2009 8:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

congratulations and nice work. Must be a nice feeling to get that out on the road. You said your restoration is "complete"....please don't tell my wife that such a thing exists. I mean, are you ever really done?
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danfromsyr
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2009 8:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

nice resto job, and I do not knwo why westfalia werke chose NOT to put the swivels in the weekenders Question Question
it's the 1st thing we added to my Brother's and well even Dad's passenger syncro..

that and a table mount on the Pass set base.. much more useful then the Drivers sided mount.

great job, now get that out and enjoy it.

Dan in NY
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deprivation
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2009 11:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lovely!
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floggingmolly
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2009 12:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Awesome, love the 85 Weekenders!
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SteveVanB
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2009 12:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Minty...I love the yellow tent!
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hiram6
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2009 12:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

-restored Westy build sticker



Hmm, lets hear some more about that. You talking about the one on the passenger door??
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Last edited by hiram6 on Fri Aug 21, 2009 5:53 am; edited 1 time in total
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dan vandenheede
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2009 2:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

just in time for bus boo in Grand Rapids! If you don't know of what I speak go the busesbythebeach.com
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autostick73
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2009 4:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

How hard was it to do the canvas? I just bought a 87 Westy and it came with a new canvas top as well as other parts.
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HeftySmurf
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2009 5:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice work
I am about a week away from being done with my Syncro.....
Must be so nice to finally drive it.
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mmdingman
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2009 7:55 pm    Post subject: vented rear qtr window Reply with quote

I think it started in 89, cant remember w/o looking up photos. there is a black plastic bit on the rear of the glass (the opening is the same, the glass is smaller to make room for this). THe 'vent' is actually a Pressure Relief Valve (PRV) that allows HVAC blower air to travel to the rear of the van and exit there. Pretty much every modern auto has had these for a while, but vanagons before (89) were pretty air tight. this causes two things to occur- 1) the HVAC blower is working it's bearings off because it is essentially trying to pressurize the cabin relative to the outside air, and 2) air never flows past the people in the 3rd row seats. If the slider windows are open, the air goes in the HVAC blower and out the sliders; air just stagnates behind the slider. We did notice a slight difference when we installed these PRV windows in the syncro; noticeable but not a dramatic difference.

oh yeah, the valve bit is so exhaust gasses dont go into the van; air thru the PRV can (theoretically) only go out due to a flapper valve.

for the sake of being quick, here's a photo of such a window on ebay (link won't last forever. maybe I'll get a photo up in the future).

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/Volkswagen-Bus-Vana...sQ5fTrucks
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mmdingman
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2009 8:07 pm    Post subject: westie build sticker Reply with quote

yes, the build sticker on the passenger door. I had a few photos of original stickers and built a photoshop template for it. ...it was quite time consuming to get all of those dots in the right spot. -but it looks great (too good, actually -need to photoshop one that has a little wear to it). I uploaded the graphic to www.cafepress.com & had it printed on a vinyl sticker.

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[/img]
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mmdingman
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2009 8:14 pm    Post subject: canvas install Reply with quote

canvas isnt bad to install, but you'll suffer from repetitive motion syndrome when done.

I did not remove the whole top as directed, it was really no problem to do the rear screws with the top on, given access to short screw drivers. I worked from the front to the rear, top before bottom, and ONE DEADLY USEFUL NOTE- as you work from screw to screw, pull the canvas really tight. The first time I tried the install I found that I did not have enough 'length of line' in the canvas to make it all of the way around. -I had left too much slack as I worked between screws. had to start over; not my favorite thing to do.

-maybe it was in the instructions & I didnt read well enough.
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kobylan
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 20, 2009 8:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Looks great. Tell me more about the grill resto. I'm trying to figure the best way to tackle the chrome look trim.
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mmdingman
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 22, 2009 3:52 am    Post subject: grille retore Reply with quote

I didn't have a lot of samples to create this conclusion but this is what I suspect...

If a chrome color still exists on the round headlight grilles, they have a very dull sliver hue to it. The product catalogs of those years suggest that they looked much more shiny coming off of the lot. The wear on the square headlight grilles is quite different. I one on my 87 and have been gifted two spares over the years, and they all still have a very chrome shine to them in areas that they're not worn off. ...from this very limited sample, I suspect that the paint for the square grilles were different from that on the rounds but were both originally chrome in appearance.

I chose to reproduce the dull silver look for the camper because I prefer the dull over the chrome and because I recognized that dull silver color as Testors Aluminum paint that I used for painting model airplanes in my youth. I went to a hobby shop and found a spray can of Testors 'Model Master Metalizer Lacquer' in 'Aluminum Plate Buffing Metalizer'. I would have gladly done without the buffing part, but it was the only way to get the Aluminum color in a spray can.

Process:
1) wash grille very well
2) rub down grille with a scotchbrite pad or wet sand with 400 or 600 & wash
3) paint the whole thing black
4) mask & paint the silver
5) Paint the whole thing with a clear coat

the <Testors Aluminum Buffing spraypaint> reproduces the dull silver color almost perfectly if not buffed. Handling the part between spraying the silver & clear coat is tricky because the buffing paint wants to rub off to some extent. Again, I chose not to buff and I have not had any clear coat adhesion issues due to this (I feared such).

The grille I started with still had a lot of the silver color to it, and I took some photos to remember where the break lines were between silver & black... here they are:

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(showing silver color split line 'walking down' at an angle from the grille area to the headlight area)

...so that should help. It's probably worth a trip to a good hobby store if you're after the shiny chrome look that I associate with the square headlight grilles. The people there tend to know a lot about reproducing color on plastic. Their paints & techniques should hold up well with a few coats of clear coat.


...this all may seem a little overboard for some. I'm the son of someone who has always been deep into restoration and some of that must have gotten into my blood too.

Mark
[/img]
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J_Westy
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 22, 2009 9:21 am    Post subject: Re: Restoration Complete- welcome back Westfalia F-1357! Reply with quote

mmdingman wrote:
Welcome back Westfalia F-1357!


Excellent choices all around!

Looking forward to seeing it in person!!
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mmdingman
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2009 5:07 pm    Post subject: welcome back Westfalia F-1357! Reply with quote

all of my pictures looked so cold without humans; I needed to add a few shots from the first couple trips.

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Early risers at the Pinery

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Going to Wheatland Music Festival

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Going to Wheatland Music Festival

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Wheatland Morning

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Girls with stomp rocket


...I have more restoration notes (that may be useful) to post, but have been slacking.
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cats_r_cute
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2009 6:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I really want the yellow nylon tent from gowesty! I imagine the bright cheery color of golden light coming thru is awesome.
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